Thierry Henry has delivered a harsh assessment on Tottenham Hotspur, calling them "mentally weak" after a late-season capitulation saw them finish in third place.
With four games remaining, Spurs still had a realistic chance of winning the Premier League. They were five points away from Leicester City with but two draws and two defeats saw them eventually finish 11 points behind the Foxes.
To add grave insult to injury, a capitulation on the final day of the season against Newcastle United allowed Arsenal to leapfrog them into second place. While there is no trophy for second place, it handed the bragging rights to the Gunners for the 21st season in a row.
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Needless to say, the Tottenham players looked beyond dejected as they left St James' Park having been humbled 5-1 by a 10-man team who were already relegated. Mauricio Pochettino rightly described it as his "worst day in management".
Now Henry, who was regularly the thorn in Tottenham's side during his playing days with the Gunners, has twisted the knife in. In his latest column for Sky Sports, he said Pochettino's reliance on younger players left them vulnerable to such a disastrous downturn.
"We were all praising them at the beginning of the season, saying they were mentally strong and technically and physically great," former Arsenal forward Henry said on Sky Sports.
"But they showed in the last few games something that you have when you have a team of a lot of youngsters; sometimes you can be mentally weak.
"You need to concentrate on yourself, and see what you can achieve. Obviously for a long time they were chasing Leicester to be champions, now they've finished third, yet again behind Arsenal. It does matter in London, but the bigger picture is to be champions."
Spurs the better team
Although Arsenal ultimately finished ahead of their London rivals, Tottenham will still be the happier of the two teams, at least in the long run. Indeed, the Gunners were widely expected to win the title while Tottenham would have certainly taken a top three finish at the start of the campaign.
They have also seen some promising young stars emerge in Dele Alli and Eric Dier while Harry Kane established himself as one of Europe's top strikers by winning the golden boot. As a result, Jamie Carragher believes Tottenham had the better season.
"Tottenham took it right to the wire. The table says Arsenal finished above them and of course it leaves a sour taste, but Pochettino echoed Thierry's thoughts and said forget this Arsenal thing, it's about going for the title and winning trophies."
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